I took this photo at 7:01am on Monday, October 8th while standing on Bear Rocks Preserve, one of West Virginia’s most iconic overlooks. That was 7 minutes after dawn and 20 minutes before sunrise.
Bear Rocks is made up of massive sandstone boulders that form a ridge line, pointing north along the eastern edge of the Dolly Sods plateau. The boulders are interspersed with red spruce trees and huckleberry shrubs and surrounded by ancient bogs.
I noted the exact time when I took this photograph from my camera’s internal clock. In reality, however, time seems to stand still in this barren, forlorn landscape, especially when one is standing in the darkness, watching the sky to the northeast turn slowly from black to purple, to red, to orange and then to yellow, as the rising sun breaches the horizon beyond the receding lines of mountain ridges and valleys filled with early morning fog.